Monthly Archives: December 2015

Setting the book free

Phil: Right – Book 1 is finished. Done. Dusted. We’re just working on the marketing and have sold a few copies.

Our signing session before Christmas saw us leave with a few printed copies. Some of these have been given away as presents but I decided that I was going to do something different with one of mine.

My local station has a “library” in the waiting room on platform 3. In the corner of this marvellously restored Art Deco room there is a small bookcase. On the shelves are books donated by travellers. If you need some reading for your journey, you can pick it up from here for free.

In the collection is a copy of Kate vs The Dirtboffins.

I wonder what will happen to it. Presumably it will be picked up by someone who has never heard of us.

I hope they like it.


Filed under Phil, Publishing, Writing

So that’s what it’s all about

Candice: I’ve learnt something new over the Christmas period. I obviously know the importance of reading to everyone: vocabulary development, breadth of knowledge, for example, but I with a small child currently learning to speak didn’t realise the importance of nursery rhymes to this this development.

My daughter is nearly two and she is coming along with leaps and bounds.  I used to watch other parents and grandparents singing along like nutters with their small children and would say to myself, ‘I’m never doing that’.  But I am now the woman who can be heard singing ‘Baa Baa black sleep’ round the park.  And why, because she is learning at every step and the singing means new spoken words which eventually leads to understanding written words.

How do I know this?  Well she has a favourite teddy who has always been called ‘Teddy’  but a few weeks ago she started calling him ‘Teddy Bear’.  We couldn’t work out why until she started singing ‘Round and round the garden…’ which of course leads to ‘…like a teddy bear’.  She’s put two and two together and worked out that a teddy is a teddy bear.  Now, when she sees a picture of a teddy its always called a teddy bear.

She loves singing, and if its not Round and round, its Baa Baa, or Old Macdonald.  I wonder if she is aiming for a career as a pop star? Seriously, I’d like her to do something creative, knowing how much I love writing so I am hoping that the nursery rhymes and children’s book reading we are doing will lead to her having her head always in a book – like I was growing up.


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Filed under Candice, Writing

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas from Candice and Phil

And don’t forget, if you get a new Kindle or similar, you can buy our book from Amazon to try it out!

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Buy our book, or…

Buy our book or Phil will talk to you about trains

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by | December 23, 2015 · 8:47 am

Buy our book, or…

Buy our book, or Candice will get angry!

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by | December 22, 2015 · 8:49 am

An urgent appeal…

Please buy our book so we can have cake!

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by | December 21, 2015 · 8:51 am

Selling to blokes

mancoverPhil: I was chatting to friends about The Book a few days ago and was keen to find out why they hadn’t bought a copy, even though I’d been banging on about it on Facebook and Twitter for over 48 hours.

The problem, it transpired, is the cover.

A big red high-heel shoe appeals to women and a small number of men. For blokey blokes who drink brown beer and posses a full set of spanners in both metric and imperial sizes, it’s a turn off. They thought it wasn’t for them.

When I explained the contents – commenting that there was a lot of Tom Sharpe style humour (this was very popular) and buckets of cynicism about modern work, they were a lot more interested.

Fortunately, if you read the e-book version (available for a bargain £1.99), the cover is on the screen for a few seconds before you delve into the contents. Since your e-book reader is probably fitted in a manly camouflage colour case, no-one will know what you are reading.

But the print edition is still an issue. A similar one that the Harry Potter series suffered. Adults might like to read children’s books, just not ones that look like they came from the junior library.

The publishers solved it by simply issuing adult and children’s versions of the cover. On that basis, all I’ve done is produce a suitably macho version featuring elements of the story that will appear to the hairier gender.

OK, it’s not as good as Kari’s version but I think I’m getting there. All my ideas were stolen inspired by best selling man-books.

  • Explosion – Check
  • Roarty macho vehicle – Check
  • Pretty lady – Check
  • Macho lettering – Check

I’d have put some guns it it expect we don’t have any of those in the story, you’ll have to wait for Book 2 for this, and my search for “Brussel Sprout hand grenade” has so far defeated Google.

So, if you need to read your book in public and want it to bland in with your Andy McNabb collection, just print out the picture above and stick it over the cover. Camouflage – that’s the trick!

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Filed under Books, Phil, Publishing